Our Team


Sandra M. Chafouleas, PhD
Project Director and Co-Principal Investigator

Dr. Chafouleas is the associate dean for research and a professor in the department of educational psychology within the Neag School of Education. Dr. Chafouleas received her Ph.D. in school psychology from Syracuse University and has been a licensed psychologist in Connecticut since 2001. Her primary areas of research involve behavioral, social, and emotional assessment and intervention in schools. She has authored over 100 articles, book chapters, and books. She serves or has served as the Project Director on IES-funded projects related to exploration of behavior assessment policies and practices in schools (Project NEEDs2) and evaluation of school-based behavior assessment tools involving Direct Behavior Rating (Project VIABLE & VIABLE-II), as well as post-doctoral fellowship (Project PBER). She is a member of the Society for the Study of School Psychology, and a fellow in both the American Psychological Association and Association for Psychological Science. Prior to becoming a university trainer, she worked as a school psychologist and school administrator in a variety of settings dealing with children with behavior disorders.



Amy Briesch

Amy M. Briesch, PhD
Co-Principal Investigator

Dr. Briesch is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Counseling and Applied Educational Psychology in the Bouvé College of Health Sciences at Northeastern University. Dr. Briesch received her Ph.D. from the University of Connecticut, and completed her pre-doctoral internship with the Heartland Area Education Agency. Her research interests involve the identification and integration of feasible social behavior assessment approaches into school systems and the role of student involvement in intervention design and implementation. In 2010- 11, she served as the Project Director for an Early Career Research Grant awarded through the Society for the Study of School Psychology. Dr. Briesch has authored 30 peer-reviewed journal articles to date, and currently serves as an editorial board member on major journals.



Betsy McCoach

D. Betsy McCoach, PhD
Co-Principal Investigator

Dr. D. Betsy McCoach is an Associate Professor in the Measurement, Evaluation and Assessment program at the University of Connecticut. She has extensive experience in hierarchical linear modeling, instrument design, factor analysis, and structural equation modeling. Betsy has published over 75 journal articles, book chapters, and books, including Multilevel Modeling of Educational Data with Ann O’Connell and Instrument Development in the Affective Domain (3rd edition)with Robert K. Gable and John P. Madura. Betsy served as the founding co-editor for the Journal of Advanced Academics, and she is the current co-editor of Gifted Child Quarterly. Betsy is the founder and conference chair of the Modern Modeling Methods conference, held annually at UConn. Dr. McCoach serves as the Project Director on a USDOE GAANN grant that funds fellowships for doctoral students in measurement, evaluation, and assessment. She also serves as a Co-PI and research methodologist on several research grants funded through IES and NSF.



Jennifer Dineen

Jennifer Necci Dineen, PhD
Survey Methodologist and Co-Investigator

Dr. Dineen is the Director of the Graduate Program in Survey Research (GPSR) in the Department of Public Policy at the University of Connecticut. Dr. Dineen received her Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of
Connecticut. Before joining the Department of Public Policy, she worked as an independent research consultant conducting both qualitative and quantitative studies for community-based organizations, educational institutions, corporations and government agencies such as the Census Bureau and FDIC. Dr. Dineen previously worked as a project director for the University of Connecticut’s Center for Survey Research and Analysis where she directed studies for university faculty, the U.S. Department of Labor, Fortune 500 companies, and Connecticut State Agencies.



Helene Marcy

Helene M. Marcy, MPP
Project Manager

Helene Marcy received a Master of Survey Research from the University of Connecticut and a Master of Public Policy from the University of Chicago. Ms. Marcy has over thirteen years experience working in the not-for-profit and academic sectors, focusing on social justice and poverty-related issues. She has worked on many quantitative and qualitative applied research projects and has extensive experience working with organizations and community leaders to identify issues and implement research projects that have led to policy and administrative changes. Ms. Marcy previously worked for the University of Connecticut Department of Public Policy, the University of Connecticut Center for Survey Research and Analysis, and the Center for Impact Research in Chicago.



Austin Johnson

Austin H. Johnson, PhD

Dr. Johnson is an Assistant Professor at the University of California, Riverside, and a former Postdoctoral Research Fellow with the NEEDs2 Project at the University of Connecticut. Dr. Johnson received his Ph.D. from the School Psychology program at the University of Connecticut, with research interests focusing on the identification of evidence-based behavior support practices, the evaluation of observationally-based behavior assessment methodologies, and methodological and statistical issues in single-case research. As a doctoral intern, Dr. Johnson provided academic, behavioral, and prosocial consultative supports to rural schools and districts in Eastern Connecticut.